This past weekend I had the honor of attending the baptism of one of my favorite little eight year old girls. This darling girl has the sweetest smile, sings like an angel, and keeps her room clean. We got together one beautiful evening back in May when all the flowers were blooming and no one was in danger of heat exhaustion and had a photo shoot at the Gilbert LDS Temple. It was an unusually windy day, but that just made her look more like a rock star. A rock star who makes great choices, obviously.
Category Archives: Locations
I’ve always wanted to take dance lessons. The closest I’ve ever come was zumba class at the rec center. Then I developed bad knees because apparently I’m a 37 year old senior citizen. (Have I mentioned my undiagnosed early onset dimentia?) Since my dream of being a dancer is pretty much dead, I’ve been living vicariously through my daughter (as one does). CB has been dancing for many years now and few things bring me more joy than watching her perform. She ended another year of dance recently with back-to-back endless dance recitals. (As my dad once put it, “Some of those parents are just throwing their money away.”) What I love most about watching her perform is seeing the happiness that it brings her. That way I don’t feel like a creepy dance mom.
By the end of the year, CB was tired of having to keep her hair long (so she could wear it in the required Ariana Grande high ponytail). The day after her recital, CB got her hair chopped off. We picked our two favorite recital costumes and headed downtown for a photo shoot to celebrate her hard work and her new look.
Roosevelt Row Art District is an area of downtown Phoenix dedicated to visual arts and fried foods (from what I saw). I’ve seen some of the beautiful murals in this area pop up on my Instagram feed and have been dying to take a look for myself. It’s such a cool place to hang out and an even better place for portraits. (Though a stranger did tell me he wanted to punch me in the face when he saw me taking pictures. So watch out for face punchers, I guess.) I don’t think we found half of the amazing artwork on display in Roosevelt Row. We’ll have to put on our dancing shoes and head back for more.
Last week’s portrait session was extra special for me. I got to photograph my own child for his baptism portraits! M is my youngest and he may be the most positive person I’ve ever met. He gets so excited about absolutely everything. For real. We recently bought him some new underwear and he spent the day thanking us and telling us how amazing his new underwear is. (Weirdo.) He turns eight this week and it’s a birthday he’s looked forward to for a long time because he gets to be baptized. I took him out to Freestone Park dressed in his Sunday best and he modeled like a pro. I photograph a lot of kids, so it surprised me how easy going he was about the whole thing. No bribe attempts or blubbering. He simply said “Please. Please I have to know . . . Will there be frozen yogurt after all this?” Anything for you, kid.
Looking for more ideas for baptism portraits? Check out my Pinterest board!
When my family and I moved to Arizona from St. Louis, MO, we drove into the state on Route 66. We entered Northeastern Arizona and found ourselves in the mountains surrounded by pine trees and cabins. We thought, “Wait–this is Arizona?” Then we kept driving south where we were greeted by rolling hills covered in saguaro cacti. We thought, “Wait-this is Arizona?” Then we entered the Mesa/Gilbert area with its palm trees and citrus groves and thought, “WHAT IS ARIZONA?” It turns out, Arizona is all the things. Drive two hours in any direction and you’ll find a completely different landscape. It’s intriguing and wonderful and one of the many reasons I heart AZ.
The Riparian Preserve at Water Ranch in Gilbert is one of my favorite locations for portraits because you will find many different Arizona landscapes in just one spot. The cactus garden is a particularly popular spot. (I even had my own family photos taken there last year.) I had the pleasure of photographing one of my favorite families in the cactus garden recently. This family was amazing! They followed directions and looked great doing it. That’s really all it takes for me to like you.
Ask any elementary school student in Arizona to name you the “Five C’s” and they will proudly sound them off: copper, cattle, citrus, climate and COTTON! I was surprised when I learned that there were cotton fields in my area, but didn’t think much of it until my Instagram feed started filling up with photo sessions in cotton fields. There’s something so ethereal and soft about cotton field portraits and I wanted in. Unfortunately, you can’t just Google “Cotton fields near me.” (Well, you can. It will likely lead you to a map of all the cotton fields in Australia. Very helpful. For Australians.) In late January I went with my son on a field trip and as we were riding on the bus we passed a cotton field. I nearly did backflips! It was white and beautiful and ready for someone to take its picture. I immediately scheduled a photo shoot. Then I went to check out the field. It looked like this.
Oh! the disappointment! There was still a row of cotton around the edge of the crop, so I pulled out my 50mm lens and hoped magic would happen.
Ta-da! That’s the magic of a good lens. Let that be a lesson to us all. By the time we finally had our photo shoot in early February, the crop had been plowed TO THE GROUND. It was tragic. So, it turns out cotton fields are available from September to January. If this is something you’re interested in, plan accordingly.
This is Diana Irving of Diana Irving Photography. We got together to try out some new equipment and techniques. It’s always such a great learning experience to shoot with another photographer and share tips and with each other. We both had a great time photographing this lovely young woman as well as our beautiful mother and daughter models. I can’t wait until the cotton comes back!